Saturday, July 4, 2009

Turkoglu is heading to Toronto

Free agent forward Hedo Turkoglu changed his mind Friday and decided not to join the Portland Trail Blazers, opting instead to accept a five-year $53 million offer from the Toronto Raptors, sources told

The decision left the Blazers livid and was a huge coup for the Raptors, who have promised Turkoglu all of the salary-cap space they will have from renouncing their rights to Shawn Marion, Anthony Parker and Carlos Delfino, which will likely add up to a starting salary in the $10.1 million range, with eight percent annual raises.

The Raptors have until July 7 to renounce Marion, Delfino and Parker, so it remains a possibility and that a sign-and-trade deal could take shape between Toronto and Turkoglu's former team, Orlando. But as of now, it is straight up deal between Turkoglu and Toronto that can be announced July 8.

A source close to the discussions said Turkoglu had given a verbal commitment to the Blazers on Thursday, then alerted the team on Friday morning that he was having second thoughts. By mid-afternoon Pacific time, the Blazers were told the deal was dead and Turkoglu would be signing with the Raptors.

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